These days, there’s nothing like finding undiscovered destinations of unmatched rugged beauty like the majestic region of Kelmend with its countless caves, canyons, waterfalls, springs, plateaus and more.
The many spectacular destinations of this northern region near the city of Shkodra, have recently attracted the attention of local and international visitors. Perhaps there is no better place to meet both with Albanian tradition and a wonderfully untouched landscape, all of which will transport you to a place and time that is no longer available in the 21st century. It is in the village of Selca, in particular, that you will nicely become acquainted with the best this region has to offer.
Selca Village in Kelmend, Shkodra, Photo by Jon Rose
Natural wonders of Selca
Selca Village, located 8 km north of Kelmend’s municipality, is undoubtedly one of the must-see destinations of this highland. The area is renowned for its beautiful landscape, the surrounding high peaks, and the sheer variety of natural phenomena that make a visit here particularly exciting. For instance, Gerrla, the spectacular canyon formed by the Cem River, grants the village a special kind of beauty. But, there’s more!
One attraction that is drawing increasing numbers of tourists is the Selca Waterfall or, as the locals call it, Sllapi. In order to reach this destination, the visitor must walk for approximately two hours. The hike is a chance to explore numerous mountain paths, see wonderful landscapes and visit the astounding eight karstic caves of Pogonica, Grada, Rruga, Vllojaku, Paja, Turçini, among others. The waterfall comes next! It starts with a powerful spring flowing from an old rock, formed years ago, and falls from a height of about 30 m. The spot is, hands down, one of the most naturally stunning in the entire country!
Selca Waterfall. Photo by Afrim Tahiraj
Lush landscape and history
Selca Village is a gallery of a multitude of spectacular landscapes, which rightfully take days to explore and learn their story. There is much history to be told by the sites in Selca. For instance, in this village, you will find the Greçe Terrace, where the important memorandum, which resulted in the creation of an independent Albania, was signed in 1911. Numerous battles against the Ottomans were also fought here. Worth mentioning is the heroine of the same name as this beautiful region, Nora Kelmendi, famous for killing an important Ottoman leader of the time.
An especially beautiful part of the landscape of this village are its old beech forests. These century-old dense woods lend the air of this area its fresh, sparkling quality. The air combined with the ancient peaks and Selca’s history and tradition make this village a charming, fascinating and invigorating place to spend a few days in.